Sub-Edited by Charlie Scott
The weekend is almost here and to celebrate we bring you exciting Friday night football from the Premier League as Leeds United take on West Ham United live from Elland Road.
Riley Finch will be taking you through all the action as the game unfolds.Embed from Getty Images
Both these sides found themselves on the end of three-one losses to top Premier League opposition last week, Leeds to Chelsea and West Ham to Manchester United.
Which side will find themselves bouncing back this week?
West Ham will be wounded by the loss of their left-back, Arthur Masuaku, who is integral to the system which has granted them so much success this season.
It will certainly be interesting to see how they adapt without their key men tonight with Michail Antonio also likely to miss the game.
Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa has no such worries as to his starting eleven, he has already named his team during his intriguing mid-week interview.
Patrick Bamford scored again last week against Chelsea and brought his tally up to eight goals in the league equalling Harry Kane’s total for the season.
There will be some very interesting battles going on tonight and none will be more important than the fan rivalry between Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips, that will be an interesting argument after the game.
We start with the home side tonight, no surprises here really considering Leeds manager Bielsa had already named his starting eleven previously this week.
West Ham are indeed without Masuaku and Antonio tonight but summer signing Said Benrahma makes his first start for the Hammers, he actually scored against Leeds last year with Brentford.
I imagine there will be a change of shape for West Ham tonight without their star left-back.
These sides have never played each other in the Premier League before, until now.
Kick-off is moments away.
00′ We are underway at Elland Road
02′ HE’S GONE DOWN… IT’S A PENALTY (LEEDS)
Sebastien Haller poorly looses the ball and leeds capitalise by slipping through Bamford who was then taken down by an on rushing Lukasz Fabianski. Penalty to Leeds and a yellow card for Fabianski’s troubles.Embed from Getty Images
04′ IT’S BEEN SAVED….. BUT IT’S NOT OVER YET (LEEDS)
Fabainski saves well against Mateusz Klich, it was a poor penalty from him to be fair… but he’s going to get another chance after a VAR check deemed the goalkeeper to be off his line. What a dramatic start we have here. Second times the charm?Embed from Getty Images
06′ GOOOAAALLLL (LEEDS) HE MAKES NO MISTAKE THIS TIME
Klich breathes a sigh of relief after converting his penalty at the second time of asking. Fabainski was only millimetres off his line and West Ham will feel really hard done by here. Nevertheless Leeds lead one-nil
11′ West Ham have had a good reaction after going one-nil down, Haller almost redeemed himself for losing the ball which led to the goal but there is no power to his header and Leeds are let off.
13′ It’s another sweeping attack from West Ham and it’s once again Haller who can’t find the end product after producing a poor shot with no real power just ten yards out. Maybe he left his shooting boots in the dressing room?
18′ There is a brilliant tempo to this game as you would expect from this hard-working Leeds side. Proper end to end stuff. Will it result in another goal?
23′ Both sides are attacking and defending incredibly well , West Ham certainly getting closer to an equaliser than Leeds are to doubling their lead but the next goal is crucial for either side. Who will get it?
25′ GOOOOAAAAALLLL (WEST HAM) EQUALISER FOR THE HAMMERS
West Ham responded well after going one down and they now have a goal to show for it, surprise, surprise, it’s from a set-piece.
Tomas Soucek once again takes advantage of a corner after scoring last week against Manchester United and his powerful header couldn’t be saved by Illan Meslier despite the Frenchman getting a good glove to it.
It’s level again at Elland Road
28′ We almost saw an instant response from Leeds. Raphinha plays in Rodrigo who brilliantly switches the ball to his left foot only to shoot it straight at Fabianski. Warning signs for the Hammers.
31′ IT GRAZES THE SIDE-NETTING
The West Ham wingers are causing all the issues for Leeds here as Benrahma wriggles away brilliantly from the white shirts in midfield only to curl his shot just into the side netting. Leeds really need to take back momentum in this game.
36′ Surely we can’t keep this tempo going the whole way through the game. I feel like I say this every time I see Leeds play and yet every time they prove me wrong, they just don’t stop.
41′ The Leeds players are screaming for handball but it’s not given. Would have been incredibly harsh to give that as a penalty as it just grazes Angelo Ogbonna’s arm while close to his body. Still we have seen penalties like that given before.
The referee blows his whistle for half-time and what a half it was, I didn’t want it to end.
What a start to the game we had here at Elland Road, drama, drama, drama.
It was certainly a penalty to Leeds no question about that but I’m sure the Iron’s manager David Moyes will feel once again his side have been dealt another harsh blow by VAR.Embed from Getty Images
West Ham didn’t spend time feeling sorry for themselves however and played well to get themselves back in the game through a corner, no surprises really. Leeds actually have one of the worst records from conceding from set-pieces while West Ham have the second most goals from set-pieces in the league.Embed from Getty Images
The longer the game goes on the more advantage Leeds will have. Facing Leeds is like a marathon rather than a sprint and a long one at that.
You have to feel at later stages of the game West Ham may struggle to keep up the tempo Leeds have set throughout the game.
Fresh legs will be pivotal to West Ham and they may want to replace striker Haller sooner rather than later after seeing him have one of his worst performances in a West Ham shirt, sadly Antonio is unavailable.
Both sides have played incredibly well in the first forty-five minutes and we will be in store for another exciting forty-five which is just moments away.Embed from Getty Images
45′ The score is level but will it remain that way at full-time? The second-half is underway.
46′ Now this is interesting. It’s a double change for Leeds just after half-time and it doesn’t seem to be an injury provoked one. A bold move from Bielsa who clearly isn’t happy to let Jarrod Bowen and Benrahma continue to cause them problems.
What effect will that have on the game?
51′ A more of a reserved start to the second-half as both sides look to work the ball forward rather than break quickly. However the two sides are leaving huge gaps in the midfield which should create more end to end action.
53′ IT’S JUST NOT HIS DAY
Another huge chance for West Ham and another wasted chance by Haller, he could have had a hattrick today. It’s a great challenge by Liam Cooper but after seeing Haller take the ball down so well he will be disappointed with the following effort as he shoots straight at the defender.
58′ If you want me to try and tell you who is going to win this game you will be disappointed. This game is so tough to call and it really could go either way at this stage. All I do know is that we are in for an exciting thirty-minutes here.
63‘ One thing I have noticed in this game is that the pitch seems incredibly slippery, a number of players seem to be ice-skating. Could this become a factor?
68′ After seeing a first-half which produced the second most shots on target in the Premier League this season, the tempo of the game has slowed right down. All eyes will be on the benches for somebody to make a difference in this game.
74′ Leeds make their final change of the match before a substitute has even thought about coming on for West Ham and it’s the in-form Bamford coming off. Can the Welshman find the goal his teammate couldn’t?
76′ AGONISINGLY CLOSE
The ball is slid towards Pablo Fornals who continues his poor form in front of goal, by inches mind you, as his shot goes just wide of the post. So close for the Irons. I did wonder if the slippery surface would come into play and Fornals did seem to slip as he took the shot.
78′ WHAT A SAVE, HOW IMPORTANT WILL THAT BE?
It was another set-piece causing issues for Leeds and they would have conceded from Fabian Balbuena’s bullet header had Meslier not gotten a terrific hand to the effort. What a save by the young Frenchman.
Will it be the same old story for West Ham?
80′ GOOOOAAAAAAALLLLL (WEST HAM) COULD IT BE THE WINNER?
It’s another set piece goal for West Ham, simple as you like. Aaron Cresswell with a brilliant delivery once again which is planted into the top of the net by Ogbonna. It has been coming for the Irons but can they hang on?
83′ West Ham clearly not wishing to push for a goal cushion in this game as they bring experienced midfielder Mark Noble on to try and preserve their precious lead.
85′ He has had a brilliant game for the Hammers but it’s time for defender Ben Johnson to come on and add to West Ham’s defensive ranks.
87′ HE JUST WON’T SCORE TONIGHT
You can give Haller a lot less stick for not putting that one away. His fabulous overhead effort is saved brilliantly again by Meslier who has been heroic in that Leeds goal. West Ham would have been out of sight if not for him.
88′ NOW THEY HAVE HIT THE WOODWORK
David Moyes will be left scratching his head if his side can’t close out this game. An odd combination to see the two centre-back Ogbonna and Balbuena combine but Balbuena’s header glances off the post for West Ham. You have to feel once again they are going to rue their missed chances today.
90′ WHAT A CHANCE
And they almost do. Rodrigo leaps onto a cross from Luke Ayling but his header finds itself agonisingly into the reluctant hands of Fabianski. Will they get a better chance than that?Embed from Getty Images
90+4′ Robert Snodgrass comes on for Fornals in what should be the last event in this entertaining game.
West Ham take the points at Elland Road as the full-time whistle blows.
Two set-piece headers granted West Ham a brilliant two-one comeback against an impressive Leeds side to see them go fifth in the table.Embed from Getty Images
Leeds were defiant in defeat but once again their failure to deal with set-pieces has cost them. If not for Meslier’s heroics it could have been three or four. The better side certainly won tonight.
West Ham go up to the fifth in the table and Leeds remain at fourteenth, although plenty of football is still to be played this weekend.
That’s all from me, hope you enjoyed the game.